Thursday, March 25 , 2010

The President signs health reform into law Universities Explore Health Reform Impact


Not long after the historic health care reform bill narrowly passed the House and was signed into law by President Barack Obama before moving on to the Senate, a common question began to surface: “Now what?” Individuals and employers are searching for summary information and struggling to decipher the measure to determine how it might directly impact them. One challenge is that the legislation provides a framework, but many details and procedures still need to be worked out.


“Universities, including NMU, are reviewing the bill and working with insurance providers to determine what the potential effects are and how they would be handled,” said Gavin Leach (Finance and Administration). Full Story


Student Loan Reform Approved by House

Tucked inside the health care bill passed by the House is a reform measure that would overhaul the student loan industry. The bill would eliminate federal subsidies paid to private lenders and banks that grant loans, replacing the “middle man” with direct loans from the government. The Congressional Budget Office reports the shift would generate $60 billion in savings over the next decade. Most of that money would be used to beef up the Pell Grant program. Smaller amounts would be used to reduce the federal deficit and support community colleges and historically black colleges or universities and implement caps on loan payments.  


Universities Help with Census

Because the U.S. Census Bureau tracks students where they attend college, regardless of permanent address, local census workers are relying heavily on university housing staffs and campus directory information to ensure an accurate 2010 count. Full Story

U.P. 1910 Census Data on CD

Data from the 1910 census of the Upper Peninsula is now available on a searchable CD, with information listed by county, political subdivision, ethnic group and occupation. The project was 26 years in the making. Full Story


student with patient LPN Admission Suspended

NMU will suspend admission to its Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) certificate program starting in 2011- 12. But currently enrolled students and another cohort finishing their prerequisites will have an opportunity to complete their studies.


In developing a 10 percent budget reduction plan, as requested of all university departments last year, the School of Nursing determined that it could reach the goal by not replacing three professors scheduled to retire over the next two years. Remaining faculty would remain intact. But because admissions numbers in one of the programs would be impacted by the looming retirements, the School of Nursing reviewed its strategic plan that prioritized programs according to national need, student demand and the availability of similar programs at other Upper Peninsula institutions. Full Story


NMU Complies with Textbook Provisions

Effective July 1, universities must implement provisions of the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 designed to increase transparency and accountability related to textbook costs.

The NMU Bookstore has already begun to link its online textbook inventory system with online registration so students will have access to the most up-to-date information when they sign up for classes. Full Story


Administrative Transition Announced

Terry Seethoff (Arts and Sciences) has accepted a two-year appointment as associate provost, effective June 1. He will succeed Cindy Prosen (Academic Affairs), who is retiring at the end of the academic year. Seethoff will lead the effort to develop a long-term staffing recommendation for the provost's office, particularly in the areas of graduate education, research and continuing education. He will also help to address administrative needs such as accreditation, assessment, scholarship and contract maintenance. Full Story


Cousteau and Infidel Author to Speak at NMU

Alexandra Cousteau, a globally recognized advocate on water quality and policy, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a human rights activist and best-selling author of Infidel, will give presentations next week at Northern Michigan University.

Cousteau will speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 30, in the University Center Great Lakes Rooms. Hirsi Ali's presentation is at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 31, in the same location. Full Story


'Taste of Home' Dinner April 13

Dining Services will pick the top recipes submitted by students and parents during Family Weekend last fall and prepare them for a "Taste of Home" dinner starting at 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 13, in the Marketplace. NMU employees are welcome to partake for $8.50. Greg Minner (Dining Services) said he will send a letter next week to those whose recipes were selected. Each will receive an invitation to the dinner and two tickets, along with an NMU apron and a recipe card of their dish adapted for 5,000 servings.

"We did this for the first time last year," he added. "It's a fun way to get the parents involved. I remember one student who called his mom from the food court and told her about the long line of people waiting to try her dish. She wrote to me after that she wished she would have attended. Some parents really get into this. We weren't able to get the aprons out right away last year and some were adamant about checking in because they wanted to make sure they got one. Now they're in stock and ready to go."

Hockey Wildcats Advance

The NMU hockey team has qualified for the NCAA tournament, continuing the trend established this season by the women's basketball and volleyball teams. The Wildcats face St. Cloud State at 5:30 p.m. Friday, March 26, at the Excel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn. ESPN owns the broadcast rights and will carry the game on its Internet service, ESPN 360. Friday's contest will also be televised on ABC 5 and 10 in Marquette. The championship on Saturday will be televised on ESPNU.

University Forum April 7

A university forum will be held at 4 p..m. Wednesday, April 7, in Jamrich 102. Topics scheduled to be covered include the anticipated timeline for budget-related decisions.


It seems appropriate to close out Women’s History Month by profiling an NMU professor who has researched the impact of three decades of economic reform and globalization on women and family relationships in her native China. Renxin Yang (Sociology and Social Work) has also conducted interviews across generations to determine how the beliefs, values and behaviors of middle-aged Chinese women compare with their younger counterparts. Full Story


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Updated: March 25, 2010

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